When Christ gave the great commission to the apostles, he placed upon every Christian the obligation of teaching the gospel to every person (Matt. 28:18-20). This cannot be done by pulpit preaching alone, nor by the preacher alone. This was never God’s intention. Each Christian must contribute (Phil. 2:15-16). Therefore, let’s consider some reasons for personal evangelism.
First, every Christian must be a personal evangelist to be like Christ, just as He said, “the Son of Man has come to seek and save the lost” (Luke 19:10), and in Matthew 10:25, Jesus expressed, “It is enough for a disciple that he be like his teacher, and a servant like his master.” When we consider our Lord, He had no desire for great congregations, as an end in itself, but He had a passion for lost souls, whether alone or en masse. In fact, most of His work was done on an individual basis. Today, we have been called to “follow in His steps” (1 Pet. 2:21), and our mission is to “proclaim the praises of Him who called [us] out of darkness into His marvelous light” (1 Pet. 2:9). Therefore, we cannot be like our Master, if we have no concern for the lost, nor if we do nothing for them.
Additionally, every Christian should be a personal evangelist to express gratitude for salvation. It is the genuine impulse of a soul made right with God to bring others to Christ. Within the heart of every new convert, there is usually a great desire to see their family and friends become Christians. Yet, how often is the new covert smothered and killed in enthusiasm because of the indifference of other Christians in the church? Since we are in the right standing with God, should we not have that same impulse to seek and save the lost? Absolutely.
Finally, we must be a personal evangelist for selfpreservation. Can a Christian maintain a spiritual life who is not trying to save souls? In other words, not bearing fruit? According to Jesus, in John 15:1-8, absolutely not. The result is being cut-off from Christ, and this should startle each and every one of us. The truth is, inactivity is the beginning of negligence, which can lead to drifting from so great a salvation (Heb. 2:1-4). Additionally, not only are our souls effected, but even the congregation itself depends on evangelism. If we don’t bear fruit, we the Lord’s congregation dies.